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Old 29-01-2010, 03:53 PM   #1
jesuitsdidit
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Default Sarkozy callsfor radical financial/economic reform

In a dramatic set-piece address to the World Economic Forum, Nicolas Sarkozy called for radical financial and economic reform. He described the remuneration enjoyed by some bankers as "morally indefensible" and "will no longer be tolerated because they bear no relationship to merit".

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/bu...n-1881273.html


Sarkozy lashes out at bonuses but shows support for Brown


By Sean O'Grady, Economics Editor

Thursday, 28 January 2010

In a dramatic set-piece address to the World Economic Forum, Nicolas Sarkozy called for radical financial and economic reform. He described the remuneration enjoyed by some bankers as "morally indefensible" and "will no longer be tolerated because they bear no relationship to merit".

The French President said he backed Gordon Brown's proposed "Tobin tax" on financial transactions and offered stout support for Barack Obama's plans to break up banks that are "too big to fail". And, though he avoided mentioning China by name, he called on those trading nations who persistently run huge surpluses by allegedly manipulating their currency to desist.

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With some evident frustration, he appealed to his fellow G20 heads of government to implement the financial reforms already agreed at summits in Washington, Pittsburgh and London; the failure to do so amounted, he claimed, to international "schizophrenia".

In a slightly throwaway aside for such a momentous issue, Mr Sarkozy added that "we cannot have, on the one hand, a multi-polar world, and, on the other, a single benchmark currency across the globe". His remarks echoed The Independent's report last year on moves in the Middle East and Russia to oust the dollar as the world's reserve currency. He did not develop the theme further.

In a spirited performance, Mr Sarkozy made it clear that, whatever the moral failures of bankers and others, he believed that the great global imbalances that grew up during the boom were the "root of the problem".

"It was the imbalances in the world economy which fed the growth of global finance... Countries with trade surpluses must consume more and improve their living standards and social protection of their citizens," he said.

He went on: "Exchange rate instability and the undervaluation of certain currencies militate against fair trade and honest competition". The "monetary dumping" he referred to seems to have been a reference to the Chinese renminbi.

However, Mr Sarkozy's most withering scorn was reserved for the financial community, and he urged more restraints on the bank's ability to borrow, speculate and pay large bonuses: "President Obama is right when he says that banks must be dissuaded from engaging in proprietary speculation or financing speculative funds... This debate must be settled within the G20."

The UK and France are the only major economies to have imposed a levy on bank bonuses so far. Mr Sarkozy urged more to follow: "There are indecent behaviours that will no longer be tolerated... There are excessive profits that will no longer be accepted because they are without common measure to the capacity to create wealth and jobs.

"There are remuneration packages that will no longer be tolerated because they bear no relationship to merit. That those who create jobs and wealth may earn a lot of money is not shocking. But that those who contribute to destroying jobs and wealth also earn a lot of money is morally indefensible."

On the so-called "Tobin Tax" on financial transactions, Mr Sarkozy said: "I support without reservation the commitment of Gordon Brown, who was one of the first to defend the idea." He also called for international environmental, labour and health laws to be put on the same footing as trade law. That is, with an organisation analogous to the WTO able to enforce those rules through fines and sanctions.

Although Mr Sarkozy was elected President in 2005 on a free market platform, he has reverted to a more traditional French opposition to the "Anglo-Saxon model". Yesterday he said that he was gratified that the "differences between the Anglo-Saxons and the Europeans" were beginning to blur.

The next G20 summit will be hosted by Canada, in June.

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Death Penalty now Valid in Europe http://www.davidicke.com/forum/showthread.php?t=135044 posts 3 & 4
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Old 29-01-2010, 03:56 PM   #2
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http://blogs.forbes.com/davos/2010/0...gmatic-vision/


Sarkozy's Unpragmatic Vision
January 27, 2010 - 9:50 pm

Paul Maidment is Editor, Forbes Media

It was hard to tell if the half of French President Nicholas Sarkozy's audience who didn't give his Davos 2010 keynote speech a standing ovation stayed seated out of disagreement or bafflement. It was a speech of vision and was more soaring in the French in which it was delivered than in the English into which it was translated (full French text; full English text). But what that vision was was not entirely clear.

"The globalization we had dreamed of at the outset was of the kind where, instead of taking from others by means of monetary, social, fiscal or ecological dumping, each of us would found development on social progress, increased purchasing power, reduced inequality, improved standards of living, health and education. . . . By prioritizing short-term logic, we have paved the way for our entry into a time of scarcity. We have exhausted non-renewable resources, devastated the environment, caused global warming. Sustainable development cannot be achieved if profits up front and dividends for shareholders are our sole criteria."

One attendee said it was the most socialist speech he had heard from a man who came to office as a right-of-center president promising to inject an entrepreneurial free-market spirit into the French economy. Certainly there were plenty of lines in Sarkozy's Davos speech to leave free marketers aghast. For one, his view of government's role in the economy:

"We will not reconcile our citizens to globalization and to capitalism, if we are not capable of offsetting market forces with counterbalances and corrective measures."

For another, Sarkozy's proposal to push for a new Bretton Woods, the system of rules and institutions to regulate the international monetary system introduced after World War II. Not many in the room would have been too young to remember the wrenching devaluations of the Bretton Woods era.

Pehaps most bizare was Sarkozy's assertion that "the G-20 foreshadows the planetary governance of the 21st century." We'll give him a rhetorical pass on what that really means because we saw in what Sarkozy was proposing something more akin to classic French dirigisme, a mainly capitalist economy with strong economic participation by government, all steered by a bureaucratic and business elite that shares common values (or at least a grande école).

"We're not asking ourselves what we will replace capitalism with, but what kind of capitalism we want."

Intelligence gleaned at the well-attended Forbes nightcap party later in the evening suggested that Sarkozy had dumped a prepared text on climate change but 48 hours earlier. The address he delivered bore the hallmarks if not of a late-drafted speech then certainly of a vision in progress, one still in need of sharpened focus. It was almost as if he was sketching out a French version of the Scandinavian Mixed Economy model for the post-crisis world. Perhaps we were privy to a testing out of an early draft of the agenda that Sarkozy will pursue when France assumes the chairmanship of the G-20 and the G-8 in 2011 (perhaps to merge them). We can only hope that the economic pragmatism by which its president has defined himself will have returned by then.
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Death Penalty now Valid in Europe http://www.davidicke.com/forum/showthread.php?t=135044 posts 3 & 4
Thatcher ruined the banks. "DoD has lost $2.3 trillion." - Donald Rumsfeld Sep 10th, 2001.
http://jesuitsdidit.blogspot.co.uk/ Salt & Veg cure Cancer. BROWN'S THE ONLY ONE WHO'LL STAND UP TO THE NWO
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Old 29-01-2010, 03:58 PM   #3
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http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/...263291639.html


The Irish Times - Thursday, January 28, 2010
Sarkozy backs call for banking reforms

SIMON CARSWELL Finance Correspondent in Davos, Switzerland

THE BATTLE lines were drawn on the opening day of the Davos economic summit on US president Obama’s plans to limit the size of banks and restrict the investment activities of retail banks.

Senior bankers warned that the proposals would damage the world economy, while political and public figures gave them a guarded welcome but cautioned against isolated moves by governments to overhaul regulation and eradicate risk-taking by their national banks.

In an opening address to the five-day summit, French president Nicolas Sarkozy supported the US plans to curb the banks’ ability to engage in proprietary trading but warned that the reforms should be introduced in a concerted, global approach led by the Group of 20 leading nations.

“Obama is right when he says that banks must be dissuaded from engaging in proprietary speculation or financing speculative funds. But this debate cannot be confined to a single country, whatever its weight in global finance. This debate must be settled within the G20.”

Among Mr Obama’s measures was a proposal to prohibit banks that hold customer deposits from owning or investing in highly leveraged hedge funds or private equity funds.

Devising safeguards to prevent a future collapse of the global financial system has dominated the opening discussions at this year’s annual meeting, which is being attended by 2,500 delegates, including 30 heads of state and government, 12 central bank chiefs and 1,400 business executives.

Bob Diamond, president of Barclays, warned that there was “no evidence that shrinking banks is the answer” and said the Obama plan could affect jobs, growth and world trade.

A new era of “narrow” banks would be harmful, he said. Large, universal banks were created by market forces in a post-communist world, he said. “They fulfilled an important function in helping governments and corporates to transfer risk, particularly across borders,” said Mr Diamond.

Josef Ackermann, chief executive of Deutsche Bank, and Peter Sands, chief executive of UK bank Standard Chartered, cautioned against using different approaches to regulating banks in different countries, saying that it would lead to “regulatory arbitrage” and damage the global economy.

“The international community should try to resist that as long as possible,” said Mr Sands, chief executive of one of Britain’s Big Five banks, adding that it would increase costs and complexity with different countries following different regulatory systems.

“Will it help the recovery for big banks to be broken up? The unambiguous answer is no,” he said, adding that some business may move to unregulated markets.

Dr Ackermann said that small players in the financial sector meeting the needs of global trade and production would not benefit the global economy. “We are in a global financial market and we need a level playing-field. It would not be productive to have different regulatory frameworks,” he said.

The focus should not just be on protecting individual banks or national banking systems, he added.

Speaking at a private lunch, billionaire investor George Soros told journalists that he supported Mr Obama’s plans but that they were premature and did not go far enough. He warned that any investment banking divisions spun off from commercial banks would still be “too big to fail”.

“The timing of it is wrong – there is no urgency to introduce these long-term reforms,” he said.

Telecoms entrepreneur Denis O’Brien flew in to discuss emergency measures to help Haiti following this month’s earthquake.
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Death Penalty now Valid in Europe http://www.davidicke.com/forum/showthread.php?t=135044 posts 3 & 4
Thatcher ruined the banks. "DoD has lost $2.3 trillion." - Donald Rumsfeld Sep 10th, 2001.
http://jesuitsdidit.blogspot.co.uk/ Salt & Veg cure Cancer. BROWN'S THE ONLY ONE WHO'LL STAND UP TO THE NWO
- eric jon phelps is king!! and i am now the guardian of Haiti.
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